After a promising split last weekend with conference power Tulane, UConn (13-13) left a mid-week meeting road meeting with the University of Hartford with a 4-3 defeat. CJ Dandeneau (0-1) was too the loss in his first decision of the season.
It was a bullpen game for the Huskies, with seven pitchers appearing, and starter Wills Montgomerie only pitching 2.1 innings before leaving the game. None of them faced more than nine batters, and only Montgomerie went more than 1.1 innings.
UConn got out to a fast start, tagging Hawks starter Justin Cashman for two runs in the first inning off of a Joe DeRoche-Duffin home run, but other than a Bryan Daniello solo shot in the eighth, UConn was held in check offensively for most of the day. They finished with 10 hits, but they were isolated, with the Hartford pitching staff able to strand 10 Huskies on the base paths.
The Huskies had a legitimate threat in the sixth, getting the bases loaded with two down thanks to a pair of walks and a fielder's choice, but Troy Stefanski grounded out to end the inning.
Hartford, on the other hand, was able to convert on their opportunities with base runners on. The UConn staff only allowed nine hits, but UConn committed two errors, which extended innings. Walks were also an issue, with four walks between the UConn pitchers, and one run walked in.
Hartford scored a run in the bottom of the fourth, to make it 2-1. Daniello committed his 10th error of the season, this one with two down, and Chris Sullivan came around to score from second after singling.
In the following inning, Hartford tied it up, on a Chris DelDebbio sacrifice fly to DeRoche-Duffin, playing left field. Aaron Wilson was the Hawk that beat DeRoche-Duffin's throw home.
Hartford took the lead in the bottom of the seventh and held onto it for good. Erik Ostberg singled home a run with one out to break the tie, and after an intentional walk to load the bases, Chris Sullivan worked a walk to force home the Hawks' fourth run, to make it a 4-2 game.
UConn was unable to tie the game in the eighth or ninth, despite Daniello's home run.
The Huskies travel to Cincinnati for a weekend series with a conference foe in the University of Cincinnati. First pitch on Friday is at 6 p.m.